The Overbet in Texas Holdem Poker – Overview and Analysis -An overbet is an interesting tactic that some players use to protect hands or make big bluffs with. Betting more than double the pot is generally considered to be an overbet, though in a limped pot, sometimes the actual amount needed to overbet is more like three times the pot. You’ll see a lot of lesser experienced players use the overbet as a means of protecting vulnerable hands preflop, like AK or JJ. Sometimes, you may use the overbet to polarize your range to your opponent, forcing them into thinking you can only have a bluff or a monster hand with such a staggeringly large bet.
If the player is an amateur, the overbet preflop is usually a monster hand that they want to protect from being drawn out on, something like JJ-AA and AKs, although JJ may be a calling hand in their range, and AA may be played normally by some. Post flop, don’t expect to see an overbet from a rock solid amateur without a monster hand. If the amateur is more reckless, then an overbet post flop is much more likely to signify a bluff of some sort; they’ve seen players on TV make Dewapoker monster bluffs and want to try it with a huge bet of their own. Be much more weary of the overbet from the tight amateur than the loose amateur. A solid professional player, meanwhile, may be making the overbet with hands that have big equity against a potential calling hand, like 78s on a 256ss board. They make the bet because they think an opponent would stack off with A6 or 77 here, but fold if the flush or straight makes on the turn; they have little implied odds to make their hand, but have positive equity if called now and a positive return if they make A6 or 77 fold here.
Overbets are an interesting maneuver to use in hold;em. If your opponent is a player that hates to fold or be bluffed out of pots, using overbets against him may be the best way to gain maximum value out of premium hands. Instead of value betting 50% of the pot, you may choose to bet 200% of the pot, and he may read the overbet for what it is; either a big bluff or the nuts, and call off light because of his “You can’t bluff me!” mentality. The overbet is also useful on flops where you think you have the best hand on a vulnerable board, and your stack is roughly 2-2.5x the size of the pot on the flop. Instead of betting a reasonable amount, you simply overbet to protect your hand. Think A9o on a A98dd board against 3 opponents; you’re very likely to have the best hand at the moment, but the plethora of draws may keep opponents in the hand with more standard bets; to protect your hand effectively, it may be needed to overpot shove, closing the action on your end and denying your opponents the proper odds to call and crack you with.